Gaming review: Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Bros.; Deadpool; Scourge: Outbreak
Michael Plant is chief editor and writer of gaming ezine and blog GamesCatalyst.com, as well as editor of 'The Independent'’s games review printed in the Saturday supplement 'Information'. Established in February 2011, Games Catalyst endeavours to bring its unique brand of fact and satire to the videogaming community and, in tandem with 'The Independent', hopefully turn a few non-believers on to gaming while we’re at it.
Friday 12 July 2013
Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Bros.
The latest entry in Nintendo's occasional series of Mario Brothers-led role-playing games once again sees our intrepid heroes sent on a quest to rescue the kidnap-prone Princess Peach. A series of ancient mysteries must be unravelled before the missing damsel may be located, most of which involve the lazy Luigi going to sleep, so leaving Mario to enter his brother's dreams to further the adventure.
Between turn-based battles there are platforms to negotiate, too, notable for eventually incorporating an ingenious mechanism that has you propelling Mario around environments by causing Luigi to sneeze. After a slow start, where the convoluted plot is explained in broad strokes by the block-headed Broque Monsieur, Dream Team begins to pick up pace.
By the time you've squashed a few Goombas it will have you hooked, leaving you to stockpile mushrooms and buy equipment before tackling the impressively large-scale battles. Nintendo has been accused of milking its Mario franchise, but this is a colourful and addictive addition to the moustachioed one's portfolio.
PS3, Xbox 360
For those whose comic-book knowledge ends at Superman, it's worth noting that Deadpool is something of a unique figure in the pantheon of heroes and villains: insane, sarcastic and conscious of the fourth wall (therefore aware of his comic-book existence). A perfect gaming lead, you might think, and things start well as our hero quips his way through an amusing opening. Alas, monotonous combat overshadows attempts at harnessing his quirks in this missed opportunity.
£6.85 (800 MS Points)
Xbox 360 (via XBLA)
A cover-based, third-person shooter, set in the semi-near future and featuring gung-ho military types looking to take down an oppressive Company (note the capital "C"), you say? Why, whatever next? If the tired set-up doesn't already have you stifling a yawn, then the clumsy dialogue, staccato visuals and clunky action, populated with the most mindless of enemies, almost certainly will. The drop-in, drop-out multiplayer at least livens up the experience, and the price is right – but this is still unabashedly derivate stuff.
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